Heavy Rain Damages Roads Across Charlevoix County

The heavy rain is causing damage across many parts of Northern Michigan.

Crews have been responding to damaged roads all across Charlevoix County.

A stream of water flowing down next to the side of a road is of the least concern.

The real damage happened when a culvert failed and the pavement collapsed Friday morning. 

Now the road is going to be closed for the next several days.

“The culvert was too small and it couldn’t handle the amount of water we got overnight and this morning,” said Charlevoix County Road Commission engineer James Vanek.

It looks like a meteorite struck right in the middle of Ferry Road, but it’s just a sign of  heavy rain not having a place to go.

“Water is trying to get away from the road and stuff, so a lot of our culverts are older, like this one, and they just can’t handle that capacity,” explained Vanek.

On the other side of lake, crews were busy all morning cleaning up a mudslide on Boyne City Road.

Charlevoix County Road Commission engineer James Vanek says it’s going to take a lot of clean-up work over the next couple weeks to get back on track.

“Yeah, we will be on clean-up duty for the next week or so. It’s hard to believe we were plowing snow just two weeks ago and now we are dealing with flooding,” explained Vanek.

Those who live by Lake Charveloix say they are used to it, but it does seem like it’s getting worse.

“The natural flow goes under the road and the heavy rains just wash it right out and caves it in,” said Tim Spiewak, who lives in Eveline Township.

“It’s not uncommon. Seems like the storms are getting worse though, as time progresses lately, I don’t know why.”

Tim’s road will be closed for at least the next few days, but he’s staying positive.

“We just live to go around it, part of nature. You just learn to accommodate to it,” said Tim.

The Charlevoix County Road Commission says a fix for the culvert could cost around $30,000, and they are trying to get the road back into commission by Memorial Day.